Questions, Comments, or Corrections? Let us know!

Kansas Welcomes Open Language Resource Center at KU

(submitted by American Councils for International Education)

 The University of Kansas in Lawrence recently opened the Open Language Resource Center (OLRC). The OLRC is one of only sixteen federally-funded National Foreign Language Resource Centers working to increase the nation’s capacity to teach and learn foreign languges. Each center focuses on particular areas of need.

Of all the centers, OLRC has the closest proximity to Nebraska. Its work will focus on the creation of Open Educational Resources (OER), broadly defined as teaching and research materials offered to the public at little or no cost.  Faculty in KU’s School for Languages, Literatures and Cultures will produce an array of language materials that strike a careful balance between breadth of audience (Spanish, French and German) and demonstrated need for quality materials in Less Commonly Taught Languages (Russian, Ukrainian, Turkish, Chinese, Kiswahili and Wolof).  The Center will also provide an array of professional development opportunities for K-16 instructors, including free workshops in French, German and Spanish and free Modified Oral Proficiency Interview Assessment workshops, which are the first step toward certification as an ACTFL certified OPI tester for Novice to Advanced Levels.  The OLRC will also host an annual World Language Fair that brings middle- and high-school students to campus for a day focused on exploring world languages and cultures, and a Language OER Conference to be held as part of broader Open Education Week events at KU.  For more information about the Center and its work, see their website at

‘Nebraskans at CSCTFL’ Organizer Requested

Are you attending Central States? A “community organizer” is requested for the Central States Conference held in Columbus, Ohio March 14-16, 2019. The organizer would facilitate get-togethers and communication while in Columbus and provide a brief report for the World Language Review. All you need is knowledge of Google Suite products and a willingness to be social. Please contact if you are attending CSCTFL and also if you would like to be an organizer.

Fully Funded Teachers for New Critical Language Programs

(submitted by American Councils for International Education)

 The application period for the 2019-2020 Teachers of Critical Languages Program (TCLP) has opened. TCLP brings fully-funded Egyptian, Moroccan or Chinese teachers to K-12 schools across the U.S. to share world culture and language. Increase your student’s access to critical foreign languages and apply today!

TCLP is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, U.S. Department of State and seeks to strengthen foreign language instruction at U.S. schools. TCLP teachers have completed approximately 14,200 out-reach hours to promote host school critical language programs and bring global experiences to local communities. Want to learn more?  Go to

The application deadline for TCLP U.S. Host Schools is January 22, 2019.

China Bridge Summer Camp for Nebraska HS Students

(submitted by UNL Confucius Institute)

The 2019 China Bridge Summer Camp for Nebraskan high school students will be July 8 to July 22, 2019. Students must be 14 to 18 years old, have taken at least one Chinese language class, and have parental permission. Students will travel to Beijing and Xi’an.

The Confucius Institute will cover accommodations, travel, meals, and activity expenses while in China. Students are responsible for passport and visa expenses, airfare, travel insurance, and incidentals. Two Nebraskan teachers serve as chaperones on the trip as well as one or two local chaperones. The deadline for students to register is February 17, 2019.

UNL-CI will hold an information session for students and parents on December 20, 2019 in Lincoln and on January 10, 2019 in Omaha.

UNL-CI is also looking for two chaperones, one male and one female, for this year’s summer camp. If interested, please e-mail a letter of introduction, a resume, and a brief explanation for your reason for wanting to chaperone. Please contact us no later than February 1, 2019.

Chaperones must have K-12 teaching experience (currently active teachers preferred), be under 50 years old and in good health, able to manage students, have good communication skills, and have experience travelling abroad. Although chaperones do not need to speak Chinese or have any experience teaching Chinese, they should be adaptable and willing to learn from the experience. The Confucius Institute will pay for all chaperone expenses for the summer camp including flight, visa, accommodations, meals, activities, and  transportation.

More information can be found at or e-mail


ACTFL Call for Proposals for DC2019

While Dr. Moeller opened and led the ceremonies throughout the week, three other Nebraskans presented at ACTFL. Stephanie Call, Nebraska Department of Education World Language Education Specialist, co-presented with NCSSFL members “Lead with NCSSFL: State of the States”. Brett Avila, Sidney High School Spanish Teacher, presented “Transitioning to a CI Classroom—It’s Not That Scary” as the ‘Best of Central States’. Dr. Christina Branter, German professor at the University of Nebraska Lincoln presented “From RAF to Sinti & Water Projectors” on the panel “Inclusivity Through Feminist Pedagogies”.

ACTFL accepts proposals from members and non-members on any topic related to world language teaching and learning. There are multiple presentation formats, including sessions, papers, roundtables, and electronic posters. There is a limit of one submission as lead presenter and an additional submission as a co-presenter.

For more information, visit Submissions are due through the electronic process no later than January 11, 2019 at 11:59 pm.

UNO Announces MALT Colloquium, Currently Seeking Proposals

(Submitted by Dr. Claudia Garcia)


The Department of Foreign Languages & Literatures and MALT Program at UNO announce the 13th MALT Annual Colloquium on Language Teaching, to take place Saturday February 9, 2019 from 10:00-4:00 PM at Mammel Hall (UNO Scott campus).

This year’s event includes a Keynote Address by Dr. Carolyn Gascoigne from Angelo Sate University on “Reviewing Reading: From Models to Practice”, presentations and poster sessions and a Round Table & Open Discussion on “World Languages inside and outside the K-16 Classroom. Standards, Practices, and Insights towards Deep Listening and Understanding”. Find more information on the colloquium, and about how to submit a proposal in the attached flyers. If you have questions, you can contact:

Marie Lee at

Dr. Claudia Garcia at

World Language Review Special Edition

The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language (ACTFL) annual convention met in New Orleans, November 15-18, 2018.  At least fifteen Nebraska educators were among the thousands that convened for professional development and support on hundreds of topics. . The following is a special report about the annual meeting of the National Council of State Supervisors of Foreign Language (NCSSFL) and the ACTFL convention. Read ahead for session summaries, personal adventures, and resources.

Visit the materials from sessions Nebraskans attended! Go to:


World Language Review ACTFL Special Edition

National Comparison of Dual Language Programming
NCSSFL Panel Discussion
Reported by Stephanie Call

Dual Language Program leaders from around the US shared their perspectives and experience in a panel discussion.

What are needs and challenges in Dual Language programs?
Colorado: Rural districts struggle to provide qualified teachers and quality resources.
Virginia: Students who use community colleges as a bridge to university are struggling for appropriate placement in language courses.

What steps can we take to meet challenges?
Connecticut: Leadership has provided essential questions, common rubrics, standards-based grading and external benchmarks.
Delaware: A world language teacher network includes higher education participants.

What might K-20 articulation look like in 5-10 years?
Delaware: The first K-12 immersion students will have completed college.
Colorado: Language learning may be marketed from a career or skill based perspective.
Alaska: Changing mindsets may involve concentrating on technical language and connecting to business.

ACTFL Adventures of a Nebraska Chinese Teacher

I think ACTFL was a life-changing conference for me! Not only did I learn many new ideas and new technology for my teaching career, but I also made more friends!

I was surprised by the way that an amazing teacher implemented physics into a French lesson. She asked the students in the target language to guess whether each fruit can float or not in the water. Then, she put all the fruits into the bowl full of water one by one. We got many surprises. I will implement simple STEM elements into my future Chinese class in an interesting way.

Bo Liu is a graduate student at the University of Nebraska who has taught Chinese and English in the United States and China.


NOLA Fast Fact
Mardi Gras coins are called dubloons. As Mardi Gras is rooted in ancient Greek traditions adopted by Romans, coins are printed with figures from Greek mythology.


Dr. Ali Moeller
“The ability to exchange ideas and perspectives through language, the ability to observe what’s happening and interpret it with understanding, transformed my thinking and, more importantly, my behavior.”
Moeller is the 2018 ACTFL President and the Edith S. Greer Professor at the University of Nebraska Lincoln.

Akash Patel
“[World language learning is] about teaching empathy. People are exposed to people of other colors, languages.”
Patel is a Spanish teacher in Texas and the founder of Happy World Foundation.

Rebecca Aubrey
“When we cut world language programs, we’re cutting what best prepares [students] for the world that they live in.”
Aubrey is the 2019 ACTFL Teacher of the Year and a Spanish teacher in Connecticut.


State Department Pipeline to Teachers
Session Summary
Reported by Stephanie Call

State Department representatives shared the following opportunities.

NSLI for Youth: All-inclusive scholarships for American high school students to study critical languages overseas. Previous language experience is not required.

Kennedy Lugar Youth Exchange Study Abroad (YES): Merit-based scholarship for high school students to support academic year homestay as ‘youth ambassador’ in a Muslim country.

Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange: Hosting and travel opportunities for groups of US and German high school students.

Critical Language Scholarship Program: 8-10 week study abroad program for post-secondary students to learn a critical language. No previous language experience required.

Benjamin A Gilman Scholarship: Merit and need-based scholarship for undergraduate students to study abroad.

Fulbright Critical Language Enhancement Award: 3-6 month study abroad grant for undergraduate students to learn a critical language.

Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant: Provides qualified foreign instructors to US colleges and universities.


Matching Teacher Talents to Posted Positions
NCSSFL Discussion Summary
Reported by Stephanie Call

Strategies for recruitment and retention included using the Seal of Biliteracy as a recruiting source, identifying teacher leaders, building recognition programs and encouraging media awareness.


ACTFL By the Numbers

  • 20 Pre-conference workshops
  • 826 sessions (including presentations and collaborative meetings)
  • 250 exhibitors
  • 8000 attendees
  • 61 sponsors
  • 10 partner organizations

How to Attend ACTFL on a Dime

Many Nebraska teachers would like the opportunity to attend ACTFL. Here are some ideas on how to make it happen.

Get a scholarship!
ACTFL offers assistance. This year, EMC School awarded 40 scholarships to first-time attendees. The Robert J. Ludwig Scholarship Program through ACTFL supported first-time attendees and ACTFL members with expenses. The Rolando Hernandez/ACTFL Scholarship, the Stephen L. Levy Scholarship Award, and the ACTFL Student Stipend Award are similar programs.

Sign an accord!
Consider asking several cooperating school districts to contribute toward the expense with the caveat that the attendee will lead professional development and provide materials upon return.

Road Trip!
Reach out to other teachers who are making the trip. Connections were offered this year through the newsletter. Consider combining travel and hotel expenses.

Book Early!
Convention hotels fill up fast leaving the most expensive and difficult for last. Take advantage of early-bird pricing.


ACTFL Adventures of a Nebraska German Instructor

ACTFL is always exciting.  I particularly wanted to be there this year, since Ali Moeller was president. I loved spending time with my Nebraska colleagues in the evening and reconnecting with other German teachers I only see at ACTFL.

This year’s sessions definitely focused on the can-do statements and comprehensible input.  Here are some items to share:

  • Tech tools worth exploring:  Lyrics Training and TedEd (you can paste in a URL and make your own questions with timings).
  • Books to read:  “Making Learning Stick” by Peter Brown, “High Leverage Teaching Practices”, Glisan & Donato, 2017
  • Pinterest: “In a Word”
  • Fairy Tales for German Teachers:  “3 Haselnüsse für Aschenbrödel” is an East German version with an active female figure instead of the passive heroines of Disney and Grimm.

My favorite session was probably one on music.  I would definitely like to use more.  The session was for German teachers but could be adapted:

My two favorite quotes were from the session “Making Input Comprehensible”:  ‘We need comprehensible output to strengthen learning and memory’ and ‘Effortful learning changes the brain’.

Pat Branson is a German instructor at Creighton University College of Arts and Sciences and at the University of Nebraska Omaha.

ACTFL 2018 in The Big Easy

The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language (ACTFL) annual convention met in New Orleans, November 15-18, 2018. Thousands of educators convened for professional development and support on hundreds of topics. 2018 ACTFL President Dr. Ali Moeller (far right) recognized Teacher of the Year Rebecca Ms. Aubrey (2nd from left) at the Opening General Session. Ms. Aubrey is a Spanish teacher from Ashford, Connecticut with 20 years of experience teaching Latin American studies and 10 years in Spanish instruction. The other regional finalists were (L-R) Janet Rowe (Spanish, Hortonville, Wisconsin), Yan Wang (Chinese, Anchorage, Alaska), Heidi Trude (French, Front Royal, Virginia), and Jennifer Melgar (German, Austin, Texas). Ms. Aubrey credited her students for providing daily inspiration. She recalled a student who had been identified as underperforming. Ms. Aubrey was told the student would be removed for ‘language support’. She stated, “There seems to be a misunderstanding about what we do in the language classroom. We guide students through all academic content. We inspire them to learn more about the world. We empower them to engage in diverse cultures. We do that better than no other discipline.” Ms. Aubrey plans to engage in advocacy and to provide professional support for ACTFL members in the year ahead.

International Education Week: Suggested Activities for K-12

(submitted by UNL Office of Global Strategies)

The following list is just a start. We encourage you to be creative in planning events for IEW and let us [UNL] know about your activities.

  1. Incorporate information on a country or culture into your regular lesson plan, even if you do not teach social studies.
  1. Explore international aspects of the arts music, film, theatre, visual arts, literature, and dance by creating, performing, or studying artworks with an international component. This could include a field trip to a museum or concert or showing a foreign film in class.
  1. Adopt a school in a developing country and donate school supplies, reference materials, and other items.
  1. Trade questions and answers with students from another country through the Internet, pen pal clubs, or a Digital Video Conference.
  1. Encourage cultural understanding for students using the online resource One World: Connecting Communities, Cultures, and Classrooms. Sponsored by the National Football League and Scholastic Inc., this unique education resource designed for teachers. The free, web-based program may be downloaded here.
  1. Organize a cross-cultural potluck lunch in which students bring in or make foods from their homeland or ancestors’ homeland.
  1. Ask students to write essays on countries they would like to visit and why they chose those countries.
  1. Feature local international experts as speakers: Fulbright Students and Scholars, former diplomats or Peace Corps volunteers, business leaders working for multinational corporations, or journalists.
  1. Participate in a Model UN.
  1. Assign students to produce a video or website about their cross-cultural experiences. The video could explore issues of cultural idiosyncrasies, stereotypes, and/or their own experiences in another culture.

UNO Announces MALT Colloquium

(Submitted by Dr. Claudia Garcia)

The Department of Foreign Languages & Literatures and MALT Program at UNO announce the 13th MALT Annual Colloquium on Language Teaching, to take place Saturday February 9, 2019 from 10:00-4:00 PM at Mammel Hall (UNO Scott campus).

This year’s event includes a Keynote Address by Dr. Carolyn Gascoigne from Angelo Sate University on “Reviewing Reading: From Models to Practice” (10:00-11:00); Presentations (11:15-12:15; 1:55-2:55) and Poster Sessions (1:10-1:40); and a Round Table & Open Discussion on “World Languages inside and outside the K-16 Classroom. Standards, Practices, and Insights towards Deep Listening and Understanding” (3:10-4:00). Find more information on the colloquium, and about how to submit a proposal in the attached flyers. If you have questions, you can contact:

Marie Lee at
Dr. Claudia Garcia at